Category Archives: Beauty

Beauty and Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Yes, that’s right, as good ol’ Rachel Ray would say, “EVOO”. You’re probably thinking what the heck could EVOO have to do with beauty? Well, I’m here to tell you two things I use it for daily! Here’s a video I made explaining what I do:

EVOO and Beauty

The video might make it faster and easier for you, but I will still quickly outline what I use it for:

1) Makeup remover – As you may have seen in the video, EVOO works as an excellent makeup remover. It doesn’t burn or irritate, it makes your skin smooth, and it’s cost effective. I use it everyday to remove my makeup and, surprisingly, it does not leave your skin greasy. It absorbs relatively quickly and leaves your skin oh-so soft.

2) Acne/Skin Clearer – I have been using EVOO recently, at the suggestion of a friend, to help clear up a breakout. I have been using it for the past 4 days and my skin is smoother and softer (it’s usually very dry). Some of the acne is less noticeable and the redness is gone! I’m still in shock, really, that my skin is not super dry, but nice and even.

Here is an outline of what I do:

What You Need:

EVOO – Preferably from Spain (at least that’s what I saw when I researched). Nothing blended, you want pure EVOO. I picked up Napoleon brand from Safeway for $6.

Soft washcloth

Soft dry towel

Gentle cleanser/face wash

Soft clean paper towel/bathroom tissue

What To Do:

1) Wash your face with a gentle cleanser. I have been using a face gel from Simple (which I really like, but that’s a separate post lol). Then use something soft to dry it.

2) Put some EVOO on your fingers and massage it onto your face. I put extra where my breakouts and dry skin are.

3) Get a wash cloth or something absorbent, clean, and soft, and get it wet in hot water. Wring it out and place it over your face. This creates a nice steam to open up your pore.

4) Remove the washcloth and put a second layer of EVOO on, just like the first time.

5) Grab a clean paper towel or some bathroom tissue and pat your face to remove any excess.

The EVOO should absorb after about 15-20 minutes.

To use it as a makeup remover, just grab a soft paper towel and put a few drops on it and gently wipe off your makeup. Easy as pie!

That’s what I do and it’s been working great for me! I love not having red, dry, flakey skin! Try it, and let me know what you think and if it worked for you! Ciao~

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My Search for a Great Red Lipstick and Subsequent NYX Haul

Hey everyone! I recently order a few items from NYX from Ulta and I just got them today! I ordered them from Ulta website because the main thing I wanted was out of stock on the NYX website 😦 but I found that Ulta was having a Buy One Get One 50% off and that’s what sealed the deal!

I was searching for a great red lippie and I wanted MAC’s Veronica Lipstick in Ronnie Red ($16.50) but it said “coming soon” so that was out. Then I remembered I wanted to try something from Lime Crime, so I was going to get Lime Crime’s Opaque Lipstick in Glamour 101 ($15.99) and that was sold out. While I was looking on their website, I saw their Velvetine in Red Velvet ($16.99) which is like a lip gloss that goes on matte and then I really wanted it but–you guessed it– sold out! I was getting a little frustrated. I mean, I wanted to buy SOMETHING and all the stuff I wanted was unavailable! This is how I felt:

fry

Needless to say, I derped around on the internet and I found this site that listed dupes for Lime Crime products. Listed on there as a dupe for Red Velvet was NYX’s Soft Matte Lip Cream in Monte Carlo. So I went to order it and–it was sold out. My mind was blown. The only hope I had was Ulta. I popped over to their website and sure enough it was in stock and on sale like I mentioned earlier. I grabbed a few other things and here’s what I ended up with:

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First things first:

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream, Monte Carlo ($6):

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This was the whole reason for my order! I was really excited for this but I have to say that it did not live up to my expectations. I found it to be a bit glossier than I thought it would be and it didn’t seem to apply very evenly. That being said the color was nice (a bit bluer toner than I expected) and was pretty opaque. It was soft and creamy also. When I blotted my lips, however, quite a bit came off. It’s possible that’s normal since it is basically a ‘gloss’ and may not be expected to have the same staying power as a lipstick. Overall, pretty good for the price, just not what I was anticipating.

NYX Matte Lipstick, Perfect Red and Natural

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These were the real standouts for me. They were velvety, pigmented, and matte. The red was exactly the shade I was looking for. It’s a bright blue-based red that is just amazing. Natural is a great go to mauve color. After blotting my lips, very little color came off. Plus, with the BOGO deal, I paid only $9 for both!

NYX Super Skinny Eye Marker (Eye Liner)($9):

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What I liked about this is that it was very easy to apply. It’s like a liquid liner and an eyeliner pencil got together and had a baby. It made making a wing super easy and I really liked the fine tip. The downside for me was that it was a bit runny but really it wasn’t too bad. It only ran a bit on the bottom inner side of my eye. The positive do outweigh the negatives and I think I will be really enjoying this liner.

NYX Studio Liquid Liner, Extreme Blue ($4.50):

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This is an intense cobalt blue and I really love the color. It looks electrifying. It lasted all night and stayed that intense blue color. The downside: I found it difficult to apply and I felt it was hard to accurately control the brush tip on the wand. Since I was applying it to my lower lash line, it kept getting all over my bottom lashes, making it further difficult to get a nice clean line. Maybe with more practice I’ll become better accustomed to it, but again, it comes down to the price point. For the $4.50 it costs, it’s highly pigmented which you don’t really expect!

NYX Liquid Crystal Liner, Jade ($4.50):

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I really liked the color and the glitter is great. I wore it just above the black liner and added a nice pop of color and sparkle. The downside: Just like blue liner, the brush tip was awkward for me to use. It stung a little right after applying it and I also opened my eye before it dried and it got on the top of my eyelid which was annoying because I had to try and get it off and fix the eyeshadow. All that being said, with proper precaution it should apply much easier next time! I think once I have used it more and get the “feel” for it, I will think about ordering more colors.

Some quick swatches:

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From left to right: Super Skinny Eye Marker, Studio Liner in Extreme Blue, Liquid Crystal Liner in Jade, Soft Matte Lip Creme in Monte Carlo, Matte Lipstick in Natural, Matte Lipstick in Perfect Red.

On a side note, I got three random samples from Ulta in my order:

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My only gripe with this is that, seriously, the L’Oreal shade finder is not a sample in my opinion. It’s an advertisement. I was really disappointed with that but I do look forward to trying the other two items.

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So overall my favorite items were the matte lipsticks. I at least felt that I found a great red lipstick, which was what this whole endeavor was for! Thanks for stopping by and I hope to hear your comments and/or experiences with NYX products or your search for your favorite red lipstick! Ciao!

February BeautyArmy Box Review

My first ever BeautyArmy box arrived today! I was squealing with excitement because I wasn’t expecting it until tomorrow or the day after. I will show you pictures of all the fabulous things in just a moment! This is going to be a pretty long post, but hang in there, it’s packed with information! So first things first…

What the heck is BeautyArmy?

For those of you who have never heard of BeautyArmy, it’s basically a sample subscription service. Every month you receive six sample size (and sometimes full-sized) items for a flat fee. In my case, I’m paying monthly (they have a yearly flat fee as well) and it costs me $12. Thats including shipping (I don’t know if they charge taxes or anything, I’m an Oregonian and we don’t have sales tax 😀 ) Now, there are other services that offer the same thing like Ipsy or Birchbox (going for about $10/month), and there are even some premium boxes that I heard guarantee a value of over $100. But I can’t compare them to BeautyArmy for the simple fact that I’ve never tried them! However, you can check out Must Have Boxes for her reviews on a number of different boxes! *On a side note, us ladies can’t have all the fun! Birchbox offers a MENS box for about $20/month!

Why did I choose BeautyArmy?

Well, I could have saved a few dollars I suppose going with either Birchbox or Ipsy, but I ultimately picked BeautyArmy because you can PICK YOUR SAMPLES! The other services just send you random samples. Some of you may not care about that, in fact, it’s pretty exciting because it’s a surprise and everyone loves surprises! But I have dreadlocks. So since they send a mixture of beauty products including hair, body, and makeup, if I were to get even one hair care sample, I would have no need for it because most hair care product either contain conditioners (counter-productive for dreadlocks) or they’re for styling (and with dreadlocks, trust me, you don’t want to add a bunch of stuff that will seep in and not come out! I love clean dreadlocks.) So, by choosing my samples I know I’ll get a great use out of everything. I heard about BeautyArmy from Must Have Boxes as well!

So here we go!

The Box:

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I was super impressed with the packaging on this box. It was beautifully wrapped and I honestly felt that someone took their time to wrap it all up wonderfully just for me! The white box it came in is very sturdy (and uber-cute) and I will be repurposing it 🙂 Just the packaging of the box alone made me glad that I decided to purchase it!

What I Picked:

Bath and Body Works – Twilight Woods Shea Enriched Shower Gel

20130212_beautyarmy_006This has a sultry woodsy scent that I think is very pleasant. It is, after all, just a shower gel, so it cleaned me, it smells good, didn’t leave residue or dry out my skin. All wins! Bonus: Not tested on animals and I didn’t see any parabens or phenoxyethanol listed in the ingredients. Double win! (Click here to see  a few reasons why I don’t like phenoxyethanol).

Olive Natural Beauty – The Olive Bar, Lemon and Lavender

20130212_beautyarmy_012 The Olive BarLet me tell you one thing about this bar–it smells amazing! Like I-want-to-eat-it amazing! Even better than that, I probably could and it wouldn’t hurt me. Nearly all of it’s ingredients are certified organic include things like extra virgin olive oil, fair trade shea butter, oats, and lemongrass and lavender essential oils. The first this I thought of when I smelled it was green tea with lemon. I love green tea. I don’t really pick up too much of the lavender, but that’s okay with me, I’m not really a flowery scent kind of gal. To be honest, I wasn’t sure I wanted this when I ordered my box, but I grabbed it anyway because it was all natural and organic. I am so glad I did! At first I wasn’t sure how it would hold up because it felt very malleable, but I had no problems. It lathered nicely, left my skin soft. This is definitely and A+ in my book!

Ineke Hothouse Flower Perfume

20130212_beautyarmy_009 20130212_beautyarmy_010 Ineke Hothouse Flower Perfume

The packaging on this sample was beautiful! I love that they took the time time wrap a piece of purple tissue paper around the perfume. It really is the small things that count! Like I said earlier, I don’t really care for flower scents and perfumes, they tend to give me headaches. But after checking this out on the internet, I decided to give it a try. Now, I must warn you, I don’t pick out scents in a super detailed way. I can’t smell a wine and tell you the thirty different notes of berry and citrus it has, so, suffice it to say, I can’t do that with perfume either! So when I smell this, I smell flowers. I’m going to go out on a limb a say they must be Hothouse flowers. The box says gardenia, so I’m going with that too. What I can tell you for sure is that it’s pleasant and didn’t give me a migraine. I already have a headache, so I didn’t spray this on me today (I want to give it a fair trial!) but I will and I will update when I do. UPDATE 2/14: I used this today for Valentine’s Day and it smelled good and wasn’t overpowering at all (no headache for the first time ever!). My husband really liked it too which is a total bonus!

Mark. – Glow Baby Glow, Hook Up Lip Gloss in Honey

20130212_beautyarmy_008 20130212_beautyarmy_015 Mark glow baby glow lip gloss

This was a FULL-SIZE product. In the picture it looks more orange/pink but it’s not. It’s more of a nude/neutral peachy/terra cotta color. I was actually looking for a nice nudish color and this is perfect. It has a hint of mint in it’s scent (see what I did there? 🙂 ) and you can feel that freshness on your lips. It’s not off putting because it’s not super strong. I liked the color and texture as soon as I put it on. I believe it’s a great neutral color and would suit many different skin tones. I can see this being my I-don’t-have-time-for-makeup grab it and go item. This is a solid A just for that reason alone. The only downside is that it’s small. Like tiny. The tube just the way it is in the first picture is only about the size of my pinky and it retails for about $6.50 on Avon’s website (yes, it’s an Avon product). It also comes with a nifty connector so you can connect two of them together.

Yes to Blueberries – Age Refresh, Eye Firming Treatment

Yes to blueberries

From the get go, I like that this product is paraben-free and 95% natural. I have been wanting to try this brand, but I haven’t gotten a chance yet. That being said, I haven’t actually tried this yet! I will and will update! UPDATE 2/14: I have used this for the last few days/nights and I have seen an improvement in the firmness in my eyes. It also makes them feel very smooth and, for lack of a better way to explain it, comfortable. It made my eyes feel soft and comfy before going to bed. Weird, I know, but true! I will be buying the full size product soon.

Whip Hand Cosmetics – Camo Colletion, Limited Edition Loose Pigment Eyeshadow in Medal of Honor

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I haven’t tried a look with this yet, but I swatched it and I like it! It’s a very shimmery, sparkly, light copper color. The swatch went on smooth and opaque, but I can also see this being blended out for if you just want a hint of coppery glitter. It also compliments my skin very nicely. I’ve never heard of this brand but I look forward to trying it out!

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So there you have it! Everything I got in my box this month. If you want to subscribe to BeautyArmy, you can by clicking here! Thanks for stopping by! Ciao!